Indiana governor names new state education secretary


INDIANAPOLIS (WANE) — Indiana will soon have its first secretary of education.

Gov. Eric Holcomb on Thursday named Dr. Katie Jenner serve as the state’s education secretary. Jenner currently serves as Holcomb’s senior education advisor.

“This is an incredibly important time for education in Indiana,” said Holcomb. “Dr. Katie Jenner has focused her entire career on investing in students, teachers and staff, and she will continue to build the relationships needed to move our state forward in constructive ways.

Indiana Education Secretary Dr. Katie Jenner

“As Indiana’s Secretary of Education, Dr. Jenner’s certification, work at nearly every level of education and her remarkable depth of experience will lead our state into this exciting next chapter.”

The state secretary of education replaces the superintendent of public instruction, which was an elected position. The General Assembly and Holcomb changed how the state’s education chief would be chosen in 2017.

Jenner started her career as a teacher in Kentucky, and later worked as a school administrator in the Madison Consolidated Schools district. In 2018, she joined Ivy Tech Community College as vice president of K-12 Initiatives and Statewide Partnerships.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to further serve the people of Indiana,” Jenner said. “My priorities are to ensure high quality education for all students and families, and to provide solution-focused support for our teachers and educational leaders. We have great opportunity ahead in Indiana, and I can’t wait to roll up my sleeves and work hand in hand with students, educators and stakeholder partners across the state.”

As Indiana’s secretary of education, Jenner will focus on:

Support Schools Through and Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic
Provide successful education experiences so student learning continues during the COVID-19 pandemic and improves throughout the recovery. 

Provide All Students Personalized Pathways to Prepare them for Lifelong Success
Lead a top-notch team that supports schools as they provide opportunities for students as they prepare for their next step in education, training, military service, or direct employment. Close collaboration will be built with local communities, families, and stakeholders across Indiana’s full education continuum – early learning (Pre-K), K-12, postsecondary, and the workforce. 

Champion the Educator Profession
Attract talented Hoosiers to the teaching profession by working closely with Indiana’s schools of education, K-12 school leaders, local communities and Indiana employers to make teaching a more diverse, competitive and fulfilling profession. Great teachers help ensure the long-term health, success and economic security of our state.

Cultivate a Future-Ready Education System
Maximize the Department of Education’s support and service to schools by creating a dynamic, flexible and data-driven network that supports learning-focused innovation, informs teachers’ professional development, and equips students with the skills needed to succeed in the future.

Jenner will begin her new role Jan. 11.

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